Interestingly, unlike the best-selling men’s shorts under £20 which all ranked in the top positions on Amazon, the women’s cheaper shorts don’t start to feature until positions 14/15. This suggests women are maybe happier to spend more on shorts than men. So instead of capping the spend at £20, we upped it slightly to £22 so that we could include a pair from the top of the list – hopefully you’ll be able to find a couple of £1 coins down the back of the sofa somewhere.
These shorts are made from high-performance fabric and are really easy to move around in. They have a very comfortable gel padding which has 3D groove design to fit the body well and air vents to prevent too much sweating. There are reflective strips on the sides to improve safety at night or in low light. Due to the large waistband, they don’t cut in which is a real winner on longer rides. There are mixed reviews when it comes to sizing – some say they come up a bit small but others say they come up a bit big so maybe just stick with the size you usually go for.
Available with a black, blue or pink trim, these padded cycling shorts from Tenn are made from a high performance, breathable material. They have a women’s specific, anti-bacterial pad which is very comfortable and helps to prevent chafing. The shorts are constructed from 8 panels which is supposed to allow more curvature. They have leg grippers which get mixed reviews – some saying they are too tight and others saying they work fine. Guess it depends on the size of your legs really. Quite a few of the reviews say they come up a bit small so maybe go up a size.
These shorts are made from quick-drying, breathable fabric and come in four colours; blue, green, red and purple. They come with a very comfortable 4D pad which is 1.5cm thick and contains silicone gel, providing excellent cushioning on the longest of rides. The legs have silicon edges to stop them riding up. None of the reviews complain about sizing so go with your usual size.
It’s hard to say whether the more expensive ones are worth the extra money as shorts are such a personal thing. We’ve worn cheap ones that were fine, cheap ones that were uncomfortable, expensive ones that were fine and expensive ones that were uncomfortable. Unfortunately, you can never tell until you’ve ridden in them.
Our advice would be to start off with a cheaper pair and see how you get on with them before investing in a more expensive pair.